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Italian Baja: Marc Blazquez eventually to start with Fornasari RR.

Ace Poker or straight flush? The Italian Car-Manufacturer Giuseppe Fornasari didn’t decide yet one hundred per cent whom to line-up at Italian baja, but his team Fornasari’s RR 450 is almost complete and the names appearing on list are Marc Blazquez, Tonino Tognana, Angelo Montico, Franco Grigoletto. The fifth pilot could be, as seen in the past, Giuseppe Fornasari himself, one of the few constructors all over the world, and we insist saying, that he could say: "I run with my own machine." An uncommon effort, entrepreneurial and agonistic; the strong wish of showing that melting creativity, passion and courage may result in excellent results.

The very first world appearance of the Italian high performance SUV was in 2005. Engine: 8 cylinders with 5700 cubic centimeters, powerful 450 hp and extraordinary performance; acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in only 5 seconds and 280 km/h maximum speed (self limited). All that maintaining very hard dimensions, with no trouble for the comfort of 5 passengers (440 cm long, 206 cm wide and 164 cm high). Fornasari, realizing a dream, could transform a prototype into a model, made in a short series, that can calmy move in any traffic conditions, from an historical Italian center to the African desert with the same safety and reliability.

The RR 450 was created for the top positions in modern rally raid, being on sand dunes or on hard tracks. Up to now RR 450 has never been on the top level, but it won some races, thanks to its running qualities and mechanical performance. It’s a jewel to be carefully handled, while often it seems logical to seek for an immediate performance, listening to the "music" of an extraordinary engine.

Fornasari aims to the victory of Italian Baja, if an agreement can be reached with the Spanish pilot Marc Blazquez. This week a test session is programmed for a decision. Blasquez, driving a powerful and speedy Nissan Navara triumphed in 2006 (winning then the FIA Worldcup for Cross Country Bajas) and last year he missed his full success just at the last selective sector because of a mechanical failure, after dominating the race. Let’s wait now what he can do with a vehicle completed different, but certainly there are all the class qualities.

Tonino Tognana, Italian rally champion in 1982 wih a Ferrari 308 GTB. 26 years ago, but he didn’t lose his shine. In the last seasons he approached the Tout Terrain just thanks to his contact with Fornasari, who judged him an "ideal foot" for his RR 450. Unfortunately the combination has not produced yet a positive result, but the Trevisian driver is still a candidate of high classification.

Last year the "Magredi Giant" Angelo Montico realized a real exploit at Italian Baja: Fifth absolute and first Italian pilot, with a quite private Mitsubishi Pajero. He decided to attempt a climb to the three-coloured shield: he agreed with Fornasari for the rest of championship. The result was not satisfying for a lot of reasons, but now they think it’s worth trying again, immediately starting together to make use of the great experience that Montico acquired especially on Tagliamento gravel.

A great wish of revenge in the minds of Franco Grigoletto who was stopped for three times, in Spain, Italy and the Baja UK, last year. "The RR 450 is an extremely performing car, that needs much more work for its reliability. The relation weight/power implies that the most strained mechanical parts must be reinforced. As for me, it’s always a budget matter. Anyway, with this machine not reaching the finish line is forbidden."

2008/03/05 | 20:03 CET | Editor: MR/HS/Italian Baja

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